Recent Activities - 2016

NRL represented by Wayne Dimech, was asked to participate as a Technical Advisor in the Second Intercountry Meeting of the Directors of Public Health Laboratories in the Eastern Mediterranean Region held from 31 October-3 November 2016 in Muscat, Oman. Twenty Directors of 22 countries from the Eastern Mediterranean region attended alongside WHO country officers and representatives from WHO European region, Institute Merieux and a technical advisor from VIDRL. The focus of the meeting was the implementation of the “Eastern Mediterranean Region Strategic Framework for Strengthening Health Laboratory Services 2016-2020”. Wayne Dimech was a facilitator in two Workshops and conducted a presentation on “Laboratory Capacity Building: An Outline of NRL regional activities”.

November 2016: Second Inter-country Meeting of the Directors of Public Health Laboratories in the Eastern Mediterranean Region

On 29 September 2015, the launch of the Helen Macpherson Smith (HMS) Trust Biobank took place at NRL. The HMSTrust Biobank illustrates another example of the collaborative and innovative approach to medical research that St Vincent’s Institute (SVI) and its partners take in the quest to understand, prevent and treat diseases such as cancer, heart disease and diabetes.

HMSTrust Biobank Launch

Between 10 and 21 August 2015, Susie Braniff and Marlene Tschaepe returned to Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia to continue the collaboration with the National Centre for Communicable Diseases (NCCD) and the National Centre for Transfusion Medicine (NCT) on laboratory capacity building.

August 2015: Training in Mongolia

The Ministry of Health of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Global Fund to fight AIDS, TB and Malaria (GFATM) contracted NRL to review and make recommendations regarding:


  • The National HIV/AIDS Laboratory system in Azerbaijan

  • The HIV testing algorithm

  • The quality of HIV laboratory performance

  • Quality control and assurance

  • Establishing an equipment maintenance system

  • Documenting SOPs for both HIV reference and regional HIV diagnostic labs

  • Developing a strategy for the HIV diagnostic lab of the Regional AIDS Centre (RAC) to be certified as reference laboratory

February 2015: Review of Systems for HIV Testing in Azerbaijan

Between 5 and 16 October 2015, Marlene Tschaepe and Susie Braniff conducted a training workshop on the provision of a national External Quality Assessment Schemes (EQAS) at the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology (NIHE) in Hanoi. Twelve participants from NIHE, two participants from the Institut Pasteur in Ho Chi Minh City (PI-HCMC) and four observers attended the two week programme.

October 2015: Training in Vietnam

From 7 - 11 September 2015, NRL welcomed five delegates from Myanmar to participate in a five day Quality Management Workshop at NRL in Melbourne. This workshop was the last activity under the project “Establishment of Laboratory Quality Systems in Myanmar”, which was supported by the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

September 2015: Myanmar Delegates Visit NRL

Between February 23 and 4 March 2015, Marlene Tschaepe delivered a training workshop at the National Health Laboratory (NHL) in Yangon under the project "Establishment of Laboratory Quality Systems in Myanmar", which is supported by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Australia (DFAT).

February 2015: Programs Delivered in Myanmar

​Between 19 – 28 January 2015, Marlene Tschaepe travelled to Balai Laboratorium Kesehatan (BLK) provincial health laboratory in Jayapura, Indonesia, to conduct a seven day training workshop in the provision of a pilot EQAS for Syphilis serology.  The training session was a continuation of EQAS theoretical training held at NRL in July 2013.  During this session, NRL provided staff at the provincial health laboratory with hands-on support during planning, production and distribution of EQAS panels to 15 laboratories in the Jayapura region.

January 2015: Programs Delivered in Indonesia

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 Address: 4th Floor, Healy BuildinNRL

4th Floor, Healy Building

41 Victoria Parade

Fitzroy VIC 3065


Fax: +61 3 9418 1155

Phone: +61 3 9418 1111


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NRL is designated a WHO Collaborating Centre for Diagnostics and Laboratory Support for HIV and AIDS and Other Blood-borne Infections